Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Word of the Day 6/8/2010

Obstreperous (adjective)
1 : marked by unruly or aggressive noisiness : clamorous
*2 : stubbornly resistant to control : unruly

Example Sentence: On her first day of substitute teaching, Joanna expected to encounter a classroom of obstreperous teenagers, but the students were mostly well behaved.

Did you know?: The handy Latin prefix "ob-," meaning "in the way," "against," or "toward," occurs in many Latin and English words. "Obstreperous" comes from "ob-" plus "strepere," a verb meaning "to make a noise," so someone who is obstreperous is literally making noise to rebel against something, much like a protesting crowd or an unruly child. The word has been used in English since around the beginning of the 17th century. "Strepere" has not played a role in the formation of any other notable English words, but "ob-" words abound; these include "obese," "obnoxious," "occasion," "offend," "omit," "oppress," and "oust."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

Merriam-Webster Word of the Day

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